Final Project Concept

This project is all about how we “send messages”. We send messages intentionally, for example, when we text someone, and also unintentionally from our body language. This idea came from my interest in thinking about how we have grown to communicate in the digital age. As new technologies for communication are introduced less of our bodies are being used. I want to explore what we lose from digital communication by sending messages to loved ones with our finger tips. What will happen to our bodies if technology continues to grow? How much control do we actually have when we send messages to people?

 

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Final Project Proposal

I will be combining a final project for Live Web and Interaction Design Studio. My goal is to make a physical communication device for people with loved ones who live far away. What I find fascinating about long distance communication is that we miss something that cannot be simulated. I want to achieve a way to not only communicate to someone afar, but do it in a way that’s unobtrusive, private, and uses the body.

Questions:

How can we communicate using our bodies?

Can use more of our bodies that our fingers to communicate?

Can I simulate what if feels like to communicate with someone who’s far away?

Initial idea:

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Above is an illustration of what this communication device would be like. Essentially it would be a wearable that would send data through a socket server to another person through their body movements. In the above illustration, I am proposing to use an accelerometer as an input that would send data to the socket server and then back to the other person with an output of a vibration. That way when person 1 sends a message, person 2 receives a vibration. Giving the sensation of feeling someone else without them actually being there.

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Interactions/Timeline/Updates

Interactions

The piece will involve 3 main interactions: whisper, touch/hugs, eye contact/slow dance. Each interaction reflects the evolution of a relationship from

Whisper

  • breaking the ice with someone,
  • letting go of the fear of being close with someone
  • becoming vulnerable.

Touch/hugs

  • Becoming intimate with someone
  • The excitement of touching someone/feeling their energy
  • Simulating passion

Eye contact/Slowdance

  • The inevitable intensity of being in a relationship
  • Knowing when a person is the one you want to be with, no matter how long apart
  • Seeing no one but that person

Whisper

The whisper chain opens up a playful door for the audience. It will begin with actors in the audience, of whom the rest of the audience will be unaware they apart of the show. This is meant to open people up; it’s less about what they are whisper, or even if they are whispering and more about opening up/connecting with people around them.

Interactions

The piece will involve 3 main interactions: whisper, touch/hugs, eyecontact/slowdance. Each interaction reflects the evolution of a relationship from

Whisper

  • breaking the ice with someone,
  • letting go of the fear of being close with someone
  • becoming vulnerable.

Touch/hugs

  • Becoming intimate with someone
  • The excitement of touching someone/feeling their energy
  • Simulating passion

Eye contact/Slow dance

  • The inevitable intensity of being in a relationship
  • Knowing when a person is the one you want to be with, no matter how long apart
  • Seeing no one but that person

Whisper

The whisper chain opens up a playful door for the audience. It will begin with actors in the audience, of whom the rest of the audience will be unaware they apart of the show. This is meant to open people up; it’s less about what they are whisper, or even if they are whispering and more about opening up/connecting with people around them. The whispers may continue as long as the audience chooses, reflecting how love is infinite, lingering, and sometimes fades away.

Touch/hugs

The second interaction builds from the first where the goal is for the audience to “pass” their touch through hugs or other ways to people around them. It will potentially also involve a whisper to tell the next person to hug the next person. This is meant to connect people in the audience more and pass good vibes to each person. How often do we take the time to hug people around us? How often do we even hug or show physical affection to our loved ones, let alone strangers.

Eye contact/slow dance

The last interaction will be Babe’s climatic element. In addition to the actors we are using for the first two interactions, we will have specific people who will be choreographed to find their counterpart in another point in the space. Half of the actors will go and find their other half (both actors), while the other half will then go and find random people in the audience to dance with. It is meant to show the power of eye contact–

  • locking gaze with someone around the room
  • When you find your “other half” in a crowd of people
  • To lose yourself in a moment

Timeline

Time: How long? Screen
2s Black
4-5s Black with Warning
2s Black
5s Little Babes pop up across the screen
3-5s Babes Enlarge and explode pink over the screen
5s All pink, filtering audience
10s Faded videos popup mapped to heartbeat
2s Return to all pink (absorb)
3s “Whisper” All pink/ voiceovers begin
27s 3-4 “Whisper” audios + audience whisper chain commences
5s All pink/no voiceovers (absorb)
3s “Touch” All pink/voiceovers start
42s 2-3 “Touch” audios + audience touch chain commences (whisper interaction possibly continues)
5s All pink/no voiceovers (absorb)

*2 minute mark

Storyboard sketches:

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Live Mystery Dinner Party

For this week I worked with Skylar Jessen and Rebecca Leopold to create a live physical chat. Our concept was very simple and straightforward: to build a basic chat using PeerJs and setting up a Peer Server. Our idea was to have two people simulate having dinner together, but without them not knowing who they eating with but who they are. To set this up, we decided there would be two teams, each consisting of a person having dinner and a team controlling what the person said during dinner.

We divided the class into teams and chose two people to be their Bots. We told them that the people chosen to have dinner together no longer know who they are, and even further don’t know who they are. The idea is that the AI Teams would be inside of the class room connected to their Bot via a PeerId. The AI Teams were each given 10 questions and 10 answers which they would send through their laptop webcams. Their Bots would receive the question and ask the question to the other Bot. The other Bot would then wait for their AI Team to show their answer.

Below is a diagram to show the interaction:

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Technologies: Javascript, HTML/CSS, Peerjs, WebRTC, Android phones, computers

Materials: Printed signs based on Twitter feeds, Dinner plates/silverware

Setup:

The class was separated into the two AI teams and each given a computer with the page loaded. We also secretly told each AI Team who their Bot was in order to direct the answers.

AI Team & Bot 1: Kayne West

AI Team & Bot 2: Leon Eckert

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Then the 2 Bots were sent outside of the classroom with their corresponding PeerIds to connect to their AI teams. The Bots, played by Lindsey Johnson and Aaron Montoya, have no idea who they are and who they are having dinner with. Aaron=Kayne; Lindsey=Leon.

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Screenshots from the mobile view:

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We also wanted to be able to watch the interactions between the Bots as well as hear the questions and answers.

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The AI teams are shuffling through their questions/answers to find the “right” thing to send over to their bot. (*There is no right answer to any questions).

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After about 8 questions, we sent the Bot to meet their AI Teams to decide who the Bot was and who the other Bot was.

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